July 23, 2016

Partly sunny

WWII veteran, 92, finally gets his medals

LIVERPOOL TWP. — Edmund Glinka was wounded by a mortar during World War II, but never received the military medals recognizing his service.

On Sunday, during a reception at the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 5563, that changed. Glinka, 92, received a Purple Heart and Bronze Star, along with several other medals.

Edmund Glinka, 92, of Liverpool Township, never received medals for his service after being wounded during World War II. He received his medals Sunday. (GAZETTE PHOTO BY KIERA MANION-FISCHER)

Because of a paper work mixup while Glinka was in a hospital being treated for his wounds, he never got the medals that he earned.

Laura Pechaitis, who works in constituent services for U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown’s office, said this happens sometimes.

“It is not that unusual, the medals just don’t catch up with you.” Brown’s office works with local veterans’ service offices to reunite veterans with their medals.

“You know how the army works,” a smiling Glinka said. “It’s ‘hurry up and wait,’ and I waited too long.”

Glinka was part of the 83rd Infantry division. He landed in Normandy about two weeks after D-Day, June 6, 1944, and was wounded in the hand and in the leg by a mortar during the battle at the Hurtgen Forest in Germany.

He said he still has shrapnel in his leg, but it doesn’t hurt often now.

“I’m not a hero,” Glinka said. “I was just doing my job.”

Glinka’s son Dale said his father was in and out of the hospital for several years before he was able to walk again.

“He was in the hospital — he wasn’t involved in trying to get his medals,” Dale Glinka said.

Pechaitis said veterans can contact her for assistance if they never received their medals or if they were lost or stolen by calling 1-888-896-6446 or emailing her at Laura_Pechaitis@brown.senate.gov.

Contact reporter Kiera Manion-Fischer at (330) 721-4049 or kfischer@medina-gazette.com.